Brokered Conventions and the RNC

Delegate Allocation

As of March 14th, 2016, the majority of Republican delegates will be allocated in ‘winner-take-all’ fashion. Prior to this date, the majority were allocated in a proportional system (however, state laws do vary). This will be advantageous for the front-runners, namely, Donald Trump and Ted Cruz.

Rule 40(b)

A candidate must have the support of a majority of delegates from eight different states in order to win the nomination. As of March 7th, Donald Trump has five states with majority delegate support, Ted Cruz has three.

Can Trump take Florida and Ohio?

The republican establishment is hell-bent on stopping the ‘Trump-train’. While anti-Trump advertising is on full-throttle, I’m unsure what effect it is having on people already tired of pre-packaged, establishment candidates. Perhaps the electronic voting system has been programmed to shave votes off Trump. I guess that is another matter. For Trump, a victory in Florida and Ohio would make his bid for nomination virtually guaranteed. A win in Florida is likely, and I’d be seriously dubious if he were to lose that state to Rubio. Ohio is looking more difficult, and Kasich may win his home state. Nevertheless, after March 14th, providing his winning momentum continues, Trump should start amassing delegates in short order. It will be a tight race, and ultimately a brokered convention is possible.

Will Trump score a home-run on March 15th?

Here is how the market believes it will go down on predictit.org

florida

ohio

The Race to the Delegate Finish Line

To anyone following the Republican primaries, it is obvious that the 1,237 delegate threshold is looking out of reach to every candidate, except Donald Trump. That said, it is not a given that he will reach the threshold. Additionally, by June 7th, Trump will have undoubtedly exceeded the eight state majority delegate support requirement (rule 40b) to be eligible for nomination. However, Ted Cruz may have reached the threshold too. In this case, a brokered convention would take place, unless the Republican National Committee changes the rules before June 7th. All things considered equal, assuming the RNC don’t make any changes, a Donald Trump and Ted Cruz delegate showdown is possible. Hell, Kasich may still be running. Anyway, if delegates favor Cruz, even if Donald has the majority of popular votes, Cruz would take the nomination for the Republicans. In this scenario, Donald could run as an independent.